Follow the footprints
While working as an armed response officer I attended emergency alarm responses and attended a strange crime during a late evening shift.
On arrival to an alarm activation I could see the blue strobe light flashing outside the primary school showing me that the alarm was activated somehow. I parked the response vehicle nearby and started my check of the area.
I saw a door had been forced open and left ajar. Immediately calling it in and advising the command centre I entered the room cautiously with my torch lighting up areas before I entered. Checking the various rooms I could see that someone had forced open the office desks looking for valuables and petty cash.
Coming to the preschool rooms I heard a fan spinning slowly and prepared for my entry into the room.
Looked like an explosion
I saw that the room was multicoloured as if a paint bomb had exploded in the room. There was poster paint on the walls and over all the carpet sections. There was even paint dripping off the fan as the offenders had thrown the paint around to spray it further.
I could tell these criminals weren't the sharpest tools, because I could see dozens of handprints perfectly positioned across various walls where they decided to fingerprint. In addition, they walked all through it leaving perfect shoe prints in technicolor fashion across the tiles.
Looking up the side of the curtains I saw that they climbed out this window because of the prints.
Looking down I could coloured shoe prints leading to the outside fence line with two offenders clearly identified. I just followed the trail of footprints to a bush near the fence.
Calling out I advised that I knew that they were there and they needed to come up and lay down on the ground for me.
The two males were in their late twenties who started telling me they were innocent and were just enjoying a smoke in the bush. They werent in the building and had done nothing wrong. During this I contacted a Police unit to attend.
They were adamant they were innocent.
I gently pointed out that even though they had wiped their shoes and hands clean of paint while they were behind the bush I knew it was them.
Josephs technicolor coat
Both males had forgotten that they had thrown paint into the fans causing it to spray around the room as a fine mist. Which they were standing in at the time. All their clothes were covered in multicoloured spray paint.
Crime scene unit
The crime scene unit arrived and asked me where the evidence was as it was a long night and they didn't want to be here any longer than necessary. Could I point them to where the best evidence was.
I stepped aside and opened the preschool door showing the footrpints and hand prints everywhere.
I could see their eyes light up because it was all there for them, just move and take photographs, no dusting or extensive note taking.
It made our nights to have the criminals do our job for us. I wish they all were that considerate.
© Copyright 2008 by Paul Baker
Information supplied by Paul Baker
Over twenty years security & risk management experience across Australia to protect corporate clients from critical incidents and security risks.
Previously served in the Military and expert in explosives, weapons, and information gathering techniques.
Achieved formal qualifications in a wide range of security risk management skills and commendations for crisis response operations
03 9642 0599v http://corcom.org.au